Chief Executive, Maritime and Coastguard Agency

Department for Transport


  • Location


  • Job type


  • Sector

    Central Government

  • Salary/Remuneration

    up to £130,000

  • Client

    Department for Transport

Ref: GSe88371

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) is the Executive Agency of the Department for Transport (DfT) responsible for developing and implementing the Government’s strategy for maritime safety and environmental protection, working in close collaboration with the DfT and a wide range of customers and stakeholders.

The MCA’s overarching purpose is to lead Britain’s maritime sector and those who use our waters to a world of safer lives, safer ships and cleaner seas while supporting:

  • The DfT to deliver the Government’s Maritime 2050 objectives.
  • The domestic and international maritime industry’s journey towards safe decarbonisation.
  • The growth of the Great British Maritime Economy.

In addition to being the principal maritime regulator, the MCA’s major responsibilities include:

  • The production of maritime legislation and guidance alongside the provision of safety checks and certification for ships and seafarers
  • The provision of 24-hour maritime & coastal emergency response throughout the UK
  • The promotion of maritime safety
  • The protection of the maritime environment
  • The encouragement of growth in the maritime sector
  • The advancement of the sector and the mitigation of risk by working closely with the industry.

MCA has a long and distinguished past and a challenging future. With direct accountability to the Secretary of State for Transport, and reporting to DfT’s Director General, Aviation, Maritime and Security, the new Chief Executive will develop and promote the future strategic direction for the Agency. They will build trusting relationships with a wide range of stakeholders - including Ministers, DfT and wider government, international counterparts, and industry - while providing inspirational leadership to a nationally dispersed, 4,500-strong organisation.

We are looking for an empowering senior leader with a capable intellect, able to articulate a clear strategic vision for the future and deliver lasting change with the support of a large, geographically dispersed, operational delivery team.

You will need to be resilient and possessed of the judgement and ‘nous’ to navigate complex political and policy environments. Your sophisticated communication and influencing skills will help you gain and maintain the confidence of your stakeholders, whether those be in government or industry.  Experience of working closely with the maritime sector, and with or for government, is not essential. 

If you can bring the inspirational leadership we need to secure the MCA’s future and deliver its objectives, then this unique role could be the right next step for you.   

The Department for Transport’s recruitment processes are underpinned by the Civil Service Commissioners Recruitment Principles, which outlines that selection for appointment is made on merit based on fair and open competition. You have the right to complain if you feel a department has breached the requirement of the Recruitment Principles. In the first instance, you should raise the matter directly with the department concerned via If you are not satisfied with the response, you may bring your complaint to the Commission. For further information on bringing a complaint to the Civil Service Commission please visit their web pages:

To view the job description and person specification, please scroll to the bottom of the page, tick to agree to the privacy policy, then click 'Continue to full details'.

Recruitment Table

Closing Date
09:00am - Tuesday 30 August 2022 (date extended)

Longlist Meeting
Friday 2nd September 2022

Preliminary Interviews with Gatenbysanderson
w/c 5th and w/c 12th September 2022

Shortlist Meeting
Friday 23rd September 2022

Assessments/Meetings with Minister and informal discussions
w/c 19th & 26th September and 5th October 2022

Final Panel Interviews
Thursday 20 October 2022

How to apply

To apply for this post, you will need to complete the online application process by no later than 09:00am on Tuesday 30 August 2022 (date extended).

You will be asked to submit the following:

1. Some basic, personal information;

2. A CV setting out your career history, with key responsibilities and achievements. Please ensure you have provided reasons for any gaps within the last two years;

3. A Statement of Suitability (max 2 pages, minimum font size 11) explaining how you consider your personal skills, qualities and experience provide evidence of your suitability for the role, with particular reference to the essential criteria in the person specification.

As part of the online application process, you will be asked a number of diversity-related questions. If you do not wish to provide a declaration on any of the particular characteristics, you will have the option to select 'prefer not to say'. 

If you are unable to apply online, or have any issues with the online application process, please contact  

For a confidential discussion please contact our recruitment advisers at GatenbySanderson:


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